The Writing Program’s MORIA, Woodbury University’s national literary magazine, has developed a strong reputation in literary circles for the caliber of writers it publishes and its First Press Reading Series, where writers are invited to speak to the community about their work. Over the last five years and eight issues, founding faculty editor Dr. Linda Dove built the literary journal alongside Woodbury students, gaining it a reputation that extends far beyond the boundaries of our campus.
This semester MORIA welcomes its first guest editor, Scott Broker. Professor Broker’s hire was part of the College of Liberal Arts’ (CoLA) 2020 DEI initiative. The editor position includes an outreach component to, in Dove’s words, “attract diverse audiences, submissions, readers, students, and faculty to the university, and thus to MORIA.” In addition to his work as faculty editor, Professor Broker is teaching the course “Writing and the Racial Imaginary” in the Writing Program, with a syllabus that solely includes writers of color. Professor Broker brings an impressive resume to the table. A Tin House Scholar, Lambda Fellow, and graduate of Ohio State University’s MFA Program, he has been a finalist for the Iowa Review Prize in Fiction and a nominee for three Pushcart Prizes. His writing has appeared in the New England Review, Ecotone, the Idaho Review, Joyland, Catapult, and The Rumpus, among other publications.
Professor Broker also brings an important connection to Los Angeles’ literary fiction circles. While MORIA publishes poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction, it has historically attracted more poetry than prose, likely because poets know Dr. Dove, a recognized poet with deep connections to the field. As a fiction writer, Prof. Broker hopes to bring in more prose for MORIA’s all-student editorial staff to consider. He is also looking forward to bolstering MORIA’s social media presence to expand its visibility, something he feels his current staff has the skills to accomplish.
“In addition to publishing quality work from around the world,” Prof. Broker says, “MORIA’s First Press Reading Series has brought excellent talent to campus. The journal, with all of its accompanying programs, serves as one of Woodbury’s primary cultural epicenters.” He also wants MORIA to continue to build upon its investment in underrepresented writers. “As a queer writer myself,” Professor Broker says, “Diversity in publishing is something I think about a lot. As a white person in an editorial role, it’s something I think about even more. What can institutions of power, a literary journal in this case, do to really support and amplify marginalized voices? A lot, I hope.” He will strive to make the next issue of MORIA the most diverse to date. He continues, “Writers look to submit to places where they see themselves not only represented but also truly valued for their art. MORIA is already doing excellent work on this front, but there is always more work to be done. I have high hopes for what we will accomplish this year owing in large part to what has come before us.”
Last Updated on February 17, 2022.